Guided tour

Edinburgh: History of Whisky Tour and Whisky Tasting

4.8 / 5

75 reviews

Activity provider: Mercat Tours

Edinburgh: History of Whisky Tour and Whisky Tasting

Activity provider: Mercat Tours

From US$ 43.37 per person

Learn the story of whisky in Edinburgh on a tour of the Old Town and hear about the people that helped its production through the ages. Then, sample some fine single malt whiskies at the candlelit Megget’s Cellar.

About this activity

Free cancellation
Cancel up to 24 hours in advance for a full refund
Reserve now & pay later
Keep your travel plans flexible — book your spot and pay nothing today.
Duration 2 hours
Check availability to see starting times.
Live tour guide


  • Learn the history of Edinburgh's Old Town and its whisky connections
  • Hear about the changing role of Scotch whisky
  • Sample some fine malt whiskies and learn how your "dram" was created
  • Enjoy the intimacy of a small group tour
  • Immerse yourself in the storytelling experience with TourTalk devices
Full description
Follow in the footsteps of King James IV - said to be the world’s first famous whisky drinker - on a guided tour of the city he granted a whisky manufacturing monopoly to. Learn about Edinburgh’s role in taking whisky to the rest of the world, and hear how production changed over time. Listen to stories of the locals who embraced the drink with enthusiasm, including George Ballantine on South Bridge and Andrew Usher Jr. at Nicolson Street. Then, taste 4 different Scotch whiskies in the candlelit Megget’s Cellar under the guidance of a whisky specialist. Learn everything you need to know about the water of life, from how whisky is made to the effects that different elements have on the production process. Taste your way through the whisky regions, such as Speyside, Highland, Islay and Lowland distilleries, and take your first step to becoming a whisky connoisseur! 
  • 4 samples of Scottish whiskies
  • Award-winning, live, English-speaking guide
  • TourTalk devices provided for a more immersive storytelling experience
  • Small group tour
    Not suitable for
    • People with mobility impairments

    Select participants and date



    Meeting point

    Please arrive at the Mercat Cross on The Royal Mile (High Street) 15 minutes before the start of your tour and check-in with the on-street representative from Mercat Tours.

    Open in Google Maps ⟶
    Important information

    What to bring

    • Passport or ID card
    • Comfortable shoes
    • Headphones
    • Rain gear

    Know before you go

    • This tour is not suitable for those under the age of 18 years
    Customer reviews

    Overall rating

    4.8 /5

    based on 75 reviews

    Review summary

    • Guide
    • Value for money
    • Service
    • Organization

    Sort by:

    Traveler type:

    Star rating:

    This tour truly exceeded our expectations! Our guide Fred was a fantastic storyteller with deep knowledge of both Edinburgh, its history and whiskey. The guided tour in the old town lasted one hour. The whiskey tasting lasted an hour in a cool cellar room. The tasting was the icing on the cake with lots of information about four whiskey varieties/districts. Can highly recommend this tour and the guide Fred!

    Read more

    September 24, 2022

    If you know nothing about whiskey then this is the tour for you. We started with a history of whiskey walking tour.....thank goodness whiskey was available to warm you up after...really interesting, very knowledgeable guide..Charles. I booked this as a surprise for my partner, he was delighted and excited to learn more about the beginnings of whiskey and how the whiskey trade is where it is today. As I am not a whiskey drinker my partner had double helpings...and that dear ladies is the time to take the men shopping..after the tour! ......make it expensive

    Read more

    October 28, 2019

    Fantastic experience

    Really enjoyed this tour. It was raining when we started so instead of walking around the streets we stayed under cover and just were given the background to whisky in Scotland. We then went to a very warm room (which we all appreciated after the rain) and had a lesson in different types of whisky. It was fascinating to understand how the differences come about and I walked away knowing a lot more about whisky. Can thoroughly recommend this for those people who take their whisky seriously.

    Read more

    September 1, 2019

    Product ID: 118117